It's a Broccoli Party

... and you are invited.

I don't care that you didn't even want to come.

Last week I stumbled upon this blog post for Broccoli Cheddar Soup from Lovely Morning. I think I quite literally fell in love with it because of the picture of the broccoli. Is it possible to love broccoli soup but not love broccoli?

I sure hope so - because I think that's where I stand. I've always loved the savory, filling, satisfying nature of broccoli soup. But, this recipe is a bit of a lighter version. So, keep that in mind.

One of my favorite things about living in the North End is that Friday and Saturday are Market Days. There is this sizable market at Haymarket (weird to say right?) and I stock up on produce. I bring all my dollar bills (yep, singles cause I'm classy) and buy cheap onions, clementines, and the like. Its phenomenal. Then I go to Whole Foods and pronounce the price differences. "$3.99 for ONIONS. I paid A DOLLAR." Yep, just like that.

Anyway.

I fell in love with this soup and then bought a lot of broccoli at the market for like zero dollars. It was phenomenal. But as it turns out, I've never cooked fresh broccoli before so I had no idea how much of the "stem" you keep versus not. So I winged it. Whatever. I'm pretty sure my Irish Potato Famine ancestors would have been pissed I didn't eat the whole thing. Sorry heritage, I'll get you next week.

But, this soup is crazy easy to make. All you need is a pot and a blender. No fancy ingredients or skills.

So, let me tell you how it works... and then I'll give you a shopping list. You know the deal.

(1) In a large pot, heat olive oil and butter. Then add onions, shallots, and a bit of salt and pepper. Straight forward right? Right off the bat  your kitchen will smell awesome.

(2) Add the garlic, thyme, and tarragon if you have it. Yeah, I didn't give you measurements. Just add as much as you want. Like maybe a teaspoon or a little more? Whatever, it's just soup. Saute a few more minutes until the flavors have mixed. 

(3) While that business is getting all warm in the pot, dice up your potato. I used one big potato and wish I had use just a bit more. I like a thicker soup. So, if you like it thick... use maybe 1.5 or 2 potatoes. But essentially now add potatoes and toss around until well coated. After they start to soften a bit add the stock, and bring to a boil. Cook until potatoes are tender. 

(4) Now it's broccoli time babes. So add the broccoli and cook for a few more minutes until just tender. I have no idea what that means. I essentially just had a staring contest with the pot and when I won, I figured the broccoli was tender. 

(5) Remove the pot from heat, add cream, a bit more salt if necessary, and stir.

(6) This is where it gets logistical. If you are fancy and lucky, you have an immersion blender... now use it. If you aren't, proceed to conduct a balancing act getting what is in your pot in the blender. Puree the soup until it matches the consistency you like. Oh, and add the cheddar and mustard at the same time. You have 3 hands right? Just kidding. Add the  mustard  in the pot and then you can like layer the cheese or just toss it all in. I don't care. I'm not the cheddar cheese police. 

(7) Now, pour. garnish. and eat your damn soup. 


Looks pretty good right? See those little buggers in the background? That was another (small) genius idea I had. So instead of peeling the potato, I cut off the skin into thin strips. One might even call them..... potato skins. Yep. 


So as a garnish, I tossed those suckers in some olive oil, garlic powder, tarragon, and salt. Then popped them in the oven at like 400 until the crisped up. It was awesome. Croutons would have been better for soaking in the soup, but my mini skins were awesome.


So on my wishlist post this recipe?
  • An immersion blender. So I don't have to practice not spilling multiple cups of liquid in my kitchen while making soup.
  • A box grader. I had to use my zester to grade the cheese. I'm pretty sure that isn't what anyone had it mind. But it worked-ish.


Shopping List
3 T butter
3 T olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 shallot, minced
Garlic minced (recipe called for 2, I put in 5... what? are you planning on seeing people?)
Some tarragon
Some thyme
1 russet potato, peeled and cubed
4 cups veg stock
4-5 cups broccoli florets and stems, in smallish pieces
1/4 c cream
1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese (plus more for garnish)
1 T whole grain mustard

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